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Self-Proving Affidavit

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A Self-Proving Affidavit is a sworn statement by the will maker (the Testator) and the witnesses, that is attached to a Will or a Codicil, and attests to the validity of the Will or Codicil.

In most states, you will need at least (2) disinterested witnesses in order to create a Last Will and Testament or a Codicil to a Will. A Disinterested Witness is someone who is not a beneficiary in the Will or the Codicil and preferably not related to you. It is always a good idea to consult with a local attorney.

It is also a good idea to create this document, the Self-Proving Affidavit. Even though this Affidavit is optional, it is a good idea to create one as it is used to confirm that this is your actual Will or Codicil and will help in the case that your Will or Codicil is challenged in court. The Affidavit given under oath states that the witnesses saw you sign your Will or Codicil and state that this is your document, made of your own free will, and your wishes to be carried out. This affidavit should be attached to your Will or your Codicil. The Self- Proving Affidavit needs two Witnesses, however three are better, and a notary.

Please see below for some State Specific Requirements. It is a good idea to check your state laws as to the specific signing requirements and it is always a good idea to consult with a local attorney if you have any additional questions or concerns.

Last Will and Testament Signing Requirements:

In most states you need two witnesses for a Will or a Codicil to a Will. In Colorado and Louisiana you need two witnesses and a notary public.

Self-Proving Affidavit Signing Requirements:

Most states require two witnesses and a notary for a Self-Proving Affidavit.

Maryland, Ohio, Vermont and Washington D.C. DO NOT allow for self-proving affidavits. If you live in any of these areas DO NOT attach a self-proving affidavit to your Will.

Mississippi, Connecticut, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee and West Virginia require one (1) witness and a notary for a Self-Proving Affidavit.

in the following states, your Will or Codicil will be self-proved without a self-proving affidavit. This applies as long as your Will or Codicil are signed and witnessed correctly under that state's laws. Therefore, a self-proving affidavit is not needed. These states include: California, Illinois, Indiana and Nevada.